In 1944, the Veterans of Foreign Wars helped author a congressional bill known as the Servicemen's Readjustment Act to provide education benefits for returning WWII veterans. It quickly became known as the GI Bill.
Millions of veterans have benefited from it through the years, including:
- 7,800,000 WWII veterans
- 2,400,000 Korean War veterans
- 8,100,000 Vietnam-era veterans and active duty personnel
- 168,000 in peacetime Veterans' Education Assistance
- 513,000 under the Montgomery GI Bill
The GI Bill has provided some $69.7 billion aid to veterans, dependents and active duty members through the years.
Today, enrollment in the Montgomery GI Bill is automatic upon entry into the service. Each person has the right to cancel such enrollment during the first two weeks of service
The cost of the program to each enrollee is $1,200, but the benefit is up to $10,800 of education aid while in service or after leaving.
Recent changes in GI Bill provisions include:
- Vietnam-era veterans have until Dec. 31, 1989 to get their high school certificates and qualify for educational benefits.
- The VA will waive the high school certificate requirement for such Vietnam veterans who have at least 12 semester hours of college credits.
- Participants in the Veterans Educational Assistance Program may now use VEAP benefits to pay for a wider variety of educational services. This includes tutorial aid, cooperative training, and remedial or refresher training.
- Participants in any veterans educational program may drop up to six semester hours of courses without having to repay the VA for those courses.